#Carnival Planet #Calliope


there is this circus of flesh

that moves faster

than the blood can pound

that over rides all cautions

lessons learned  go out the window

when that circus opens

cotton candy balls of fun

for the ones who surrender

to take give take give

rise and fall

expectation and delivery

the fierce red flush of ginger hair

that surrounds the heave and heft

of the the timid and free

fleeting and heavy

melt of the stars

into a mouth

into the sudden rise

shape fall

stomach churning moment

when a glance is returned

can it be for me

take this opportunity

to ride the ride

to strut the street

to be in the middle of the bed

sheet strewn masses

wrinkled rivers of shadows

dim corner

vibrant and frightened

tongue chasing twists

buttons popping

slow stroke of zipper

happy slide of pants



shoes socks

fly through the air

merry go around


I know the promise

I take this opportunity

to chase the roller coaster

to sharper shocks

higher highs

all dips hips slips no splinters

only the rock solid rocket

twist and tumble

the grazed knees

the bruised knuckles

the wet dry hot cool

sweat sweet breath to catch

running faster lunge

the weight of one on the other

that pulls each to the earth

accepts and shares

separates and courses

through the veins

beat pulse

throb shudder

seek the chance to get back on the ride

I know the circus

will pitch another tent

but I am reluctant to leave this one

so sweetly pitched

so well enjoyed

employed spent and flaccid

dreamy and sleepy

cozy warm comforting

how did this come about

what was the momentum

what was the cause

of this gift satisfaction

of this mind cleaning eruption

this blank slate surrender

for a few blinding seconds

squeaky mattress and lost footing

of where is my …

…. are these yours

tomorrow soon again

as good as the last time

better than ever

comfortable and accomplished


yes so accomplished

we play each other

like a big rolly polly

steam calliope

that never runs out of steam


This time of the year can be a carnival for the senses – all this commercial shouting about gifts, the perfect music, more people than usual looking for something, some one. Caught up in lights, seasonal smells of cooking, candy and too much aftershave on the subway (or not enough). A crush rush that exhausts but leaves little time savour it.browndresser02

This piece is about relishing but only if one surrenders to the momentum. I’m also working at writing about sex without being overt – aiming for a hormone level of response. The circus analogy for sex isn’t new but I wanted to see what I could do with it.

I like some of the phrasing and the way it slips for one half-image into another is an almost unnoticeable flow – ‘the melt of stars/ into a mouth.’ In edit I did work on pacing, on sequence, to have it flow up and down, as it were, to follow the flow of meeting, tentative, then hopping on the ride and ending with the need for the ride to continue. For me the thickness of calliope music was a nice symbol for the thickness of cock.blackchair01

This is an old piece, goes back to early 2000’s in fact, when I was getting back into poetry. I wanted to write about sex without saying ‘dick.’ That wasn’t such a difficult challenge though as I become more comfortable in front of audiences my sex writing become more direct. The need to distance from overt queer content seemed dishonest.

Not that I wanted to write directly pornographic explicit poetry but I wanted to stop trying to make some of my writing less universal – I think this piece is fairly genderless – it could opposites attract or same sex encounters. With no writer’s name attached it could be written by any sex. blackchair02

It is authentic but at the same time hiding something from the reader. That hiding came from my own residual fear of being too direct – what if audiences are offended by ‘dick’ – today I don’t care. If my being a white, entitled, cismale, over 50 who likes dick offends someone – such is life. Welcome to carnival planet earth.


Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

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One thought on “#Carnival Planet #Calliope

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